Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Everyone Lies about Sex

When Bill Clinton was found to have lied about having sex with Monica Lewinski under oath, his perjury was excused with the spin, "everyone lies about sex."

A young lady named Carrie Prejean has achieved her 15 minutes of fame by competing in a beauty pageant, losing because she said she disapproved of gay marriage, becoming a darling of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, and then getting in trouble for sexual immodesty. In particular, sex tapes have come to light. I was a little uncomfortable with my coreligionists making a hero out of her. Now they've dropped her like a hot potatoe. (Note the Dan Quayle spelling)

I've been sympathetic toward Ms. Prejean. And I'm still inclined to give her the benefit of the doubt. But there are fewer doubts. She claims these sex tapes were made when she was a minor. If she were 17 when she made the tapes, then she is guilty of distributing child porn. (Yes, every minor who engages in "sexting" is distributing child porn. This crime is rarely (never) prosecuted, but it is nevertheless black-letter law.)

In response to Ms. Prejean's claims of being a minor, her boyfriend claims she was 20 at the time. He has a strong motive to claim she was 20, b/c if she was a minor, he is guilty of a felony. But if she's 20, he's merely a cad.

I hope she was a victim of youthful indiscretion and bad judgment. And I hope that her Christianity moved her to repent of her pornographic videography. Happily, I'm not the judge of this matter.

Conversely, if Ms. Prejean was NOT a minor, she's lying NOW. And she's saying she's a Christian NOW. If so, she has a moral problem NOW. The Bible puts "bearing false witness" in the 10 Commandments, but sex tapes aren't exactly in the Bible. Though Bill Clinton claimed, "everyone lies about sex," Ms. Prejean is held to a non-Clintonian standard.

So, we still have doubts. Maybe she is telling the truth and her boyfriend is lying. Or maybe not. How would we know? I suppose the videos in question could be submitted to forensic analysis.

If Ms. Prejean is telling the truth, then she is a felon. She might seek her own prosecution for distributing child porn. It is a dramatic gesture that would screw up her life more than anything she's done so far, but it would demonstrate integrity.

Centuries a fellow named Socrates was found guilty of a bogus charge and sentenced to die. He had the opportunity to sneak out of Athens, but he didn't. He manned up, accepted the hemlock thrust upon him, and drank every drop.

Henry Cloud, the co-author of "Boundaries" wrote a book entitled "Integrity." One of its early lessons is that everyone needs 1) the competence to do the job, 2) the ability to connect with others and build trust, and 3) the integrity to not screw up.

Drink the hemlock, Ms. Prejean.

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